The Japanese government intends to discharge one million tons of nuclear waste water into the sea

  The Fukushima nuclear accident will cost the world?


  Millions of tons of nuclear waste water will be dumped into the Pacific Ocean.

  According to news from Kyodo News on April 12, the Japanese government will hold a cabinet meeting at 7:45 local time on the 13th to formally decide to discharge nuclear waste water from the Tokyo Electric Power Company’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant into the sea.

Once the news was made public, it quickly aroused the concern, anxiety and anger of countries around the world, especially the countries along the Pacific.

  Studies have shown that after nuclear waste water is discharged, it only takes 57 days for radioactive materials to spread to half of the Pacific Ocean-the world's largest, deepest, and most marginal ocean with the largest number of islands.

  The Fukushima nuclear accident in Japan caused the leakage of radioactive materials, which had a profound impact on the marine environment, food safety and human health.

"Sewage into the sea" is obviously not only a domestic issue in Japan, but also an international issue that affects global marine ecology and environmental security.

  The nuclear waste water storage tank is almost full, and the Japanese government has decided to discharge nuclear waste water that meets the "standard" to the sea

  For ten years, a large amount of nuclear waste water that cannot be treated has been the "Sword of Damocles" hanging over Japan.

  On March 11, 2011, an earthquake with a magnitude of 9 on the Richter scale occurred in the Pacific Northeast of Japan, which triggered a tsunami.

The Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, operated by Tokyo Electric Power Company, suffered a power outage due to the infusion of sea water. Three of its four nuclear reactors exploded and melted down, causing catastrophic nuclear leakage.

  The accident level was designated as the highest level 7 of a nuclear accident (extremely serious accident).

So far, people still cannot live normally around the Fukushima nuclear power plant.

  Nuclear wastewater treatment is a major problem in the aftermath of the Fukushima nuclear accident.

In order to control the temperature of the nuclear reactor, Tokyo Electric Power injected a large amount of cooling water into the reactor.

The cooling water in the reactor coupled with the influx of rainwater and groundwater day after day, the nuclear power plant continuously produces more and more nuclear waste water with radioactive substances.

  Japanese media analyzed that the Japanese government decided to discharge nuclear waste water because the capacity of the storage tank for nuclear waste water at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant was about to reach the upper limit.

  At present, Tokyo Electric Power Company adopts the method of "intercepting and treating" to deal with nuclear waste water. While setting up underground water draw wells around the nuclear power plant building, using interception method to reduce the inflow of groundwater, while using multi-nuclides removal equipment to remove nuclear waste water Radioactive material in.

Since the existing technology cannot effectively remove the radioactive tritium in the nuclear waste water, the tritium-contaminated water is stored in a large water storage tank.

  According to Japanese media reports, about 140 tons of nuclear waste water are added every day.

Tokyo Electric Power has prepared a total of about 1,000 water storage tanks with a total capacity of about 1.37 million tons. Currently, 90% is full. The stored treated wastewater exceeds 1.2 million tons, which is expected to reach the limit in the autumn of 2022.

  In February of this year, the Japanese government's relevant committee responsible for dealing with nuclear waste water issued a report, listing two options for treating nuclear waste water: "Marine Discharge" and "Water Vapor".

The report claims that marine emissions are "more practical and feasible." According to the Japanese side, the release of tritium into the sea has "relatively small" effects on human health.

  Is there really only one way left to discharge into the ocean?

Japan’s “Nuclear Energy Citizens’ Committee” once pointed out that “large storage tanks stored on land” or “solidified treatment with mortar” is the best way to solve the problem of nuclear waste water under the existing technology, which can ensure that nuclear waste water is properly stored on land.

  "Although there is no space to build new storage facilities in the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, it is completely possible to build new storage facilities in many uninhabitable open spaces around the nuclear power plant due to excessive radiation concentrations." Professor of Ocean University of China, Ocean Development Institute of Ocean University of China Senior researcher Jin Yongming believes.

  Previously, Japanese media pointed out that there are a large number of uninhabitable areas around the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant due to excessive radiation levels. These idle land can be used for new storage facilities.

  However, from the perspective of cost-effectiveness, the Japanese government believes that the best way is to discharge nuclear waste water that meets the "standard" to the sea after dilution.

After all, to dump nuclear waste water into the sea is obviously easier and faster than building more water storage tanks, and also saves money, without seeing and worrying about it.

  Nuclear wastewater treatment accidents at the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant continue, and man-made disasters are behind them

  Before the Japanese government made public its decision to dump nuclear waste water to the international community, the nuclear waste water from the Fukushima nuclear power plant had already "troubled" several times.

  In April 2011, Tokyo Electric Power Company discharged 11,500 tons of sewage containing low-concentration radioactive substances into the sea.

In response, Yukio Edano, who was then Chief Cabinet Secretary, argued that the discharge of sewage was "really impossible," but it "would not immediately cause radiation pollution to neighboring countries."

  In August 2013, a serious leak occurred at the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan.

According to Japanese media reports, about 300 tons of highly polluted nuclear radiation water leaked from the storage tank of the nuclear plant "may have flowed into the ocean."

This is the most serious incident of radiation waste water leakage since the occurrence of the nuclear disaster. The Japanese Atomic Energy Regulatory Commission raised the problem to the third level "serious incident" of the International Nuclear Energy Event Scale.

  In October 2013, waste water containing radioactive substances overflowed from multiple leak-proof cofferdams around the storage tank group of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.

After testing, in the water samples collected from the drainage ditch outside the nuclear power station harbor that connects to the open sea, strontium and other radioactive substances that release beta rays, the highest radiation value per liter of radiation has reached 140,000 becquerels.

This is the highest radiation intensity ever detected here.

  On April 14, 2014, Tokyo Electric Power Company announced that another leak occurred at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.

High-concentration nuclear waste water was mistakenly sent to other factories, and about 200 tons of nuclear waste water leaked into the basement because the pumps that were not normally used were turned on.

The company said that the leak was high-concentration wastewater generated after cooling the reactor. Because it was in the stage before the removal of cesium and other radioactive materials, each liter of wastewater contained tens of millions of becquerels of radioactive cesium.

  After each accident, the relevant person in charge of Tokyo Electric Power Company made a "sincere apology", but did not solve the actual problem.

  After the nuclear leak at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, TEPCO once stated that the tsunami could not be predicted in advance.

However, reports from the government and independent investigative agencies all described the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant accident as a man-made disaster, the result of safety negligence, negligence of supervision by regulatory agencies, and mutual collusion.

  According to Japanese media reports, as early as 2008, an independent investigation agency in Japan analyzed that the location of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant might be hit by a magnitude 7 earthquake and a 10-meter tsunami. Feeling that there is a need to take countermeasures "low-key handling, but this early warning report was delayed until March 7, 2011 before being submitted to the hands of the Japanese nuclear safety agency.

  It is precisely because of Japan's passive response to the nuclear accident that the situation continues to escalate and quickly lose control.

The Japanese government can't shirk the blame for the ineffective aftermath of the Fukushima nuclear accident.

In order to avoid the bankruptcy of Tokyo Electric Power Company, although the Japanese government adopted a substantial nationalization of it, it did not assume its due national responsibility in handling nuclear accidents. Into an "information black hole."

  A member of Japan’s Atomic Energy Regulatory Commission discovered when investigating the leakage of nuclear waste water that Tokyo Electric Power did not even record the changes in radiation around the nuclear waste water storage tank.

In other words, since the nuclear accident, the response plan formulated by the Japanese government and Tokyo Electric Power has actually been flawed.

  Even more surprising is that, according to Kyodo News, among the containers storing waste and rubble in the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, there are about 4,000 of the containers whose contents cannot be grasped.

According to the report, in the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, a gel-like mass with a large amount of radiation was found on the surface of the container area in March this year, which may have leaked from the corroded container.

  Nuclear wastewater is not only potentially toxic to humans, but also affects the marine environment in a more permanent and complex way

  A Japanese scholar pointed out that the ocean around Fukushima is not only a fishing ground for local fishermen to survive, but also a part of the Pacific Ocean and even the global ocean. The discharge of nuclear waste water into the ocean will affect global fish migration, pelagic fisheries, human health, ecological security, etc. Everything.

  What is so terrible about the nuclear waste water that caused panic?

  The so-called nuclear waste water is the waste water left after cooling the nuclear reactor.

According to research by Japanese experts, the main pollutants in nuclear waste water are tritium and other radioactive substances, and their respective half-lives are different.

The half-life of tritium is about 12.43 years, the half-life of cesium-137 is 30 years, and the half-life of strontium-90 is 29 years. None of their hazards can be eliminated in a short time.

  In order to appease the international community, the Japanese government vigorously promotes the safety of emissions.

According to Tokyo Electric Power Company, most of the radioactive materials can be removed after sophisticated filtration procedures. Before the nuclear waste water enters the sea, a secondary treatment will be carried out to dilute the tritium concentration in the waste water to one-fortieth of the Japanese national standard. .

A person in charge of Tokyo Electric Power even claimed in an interview that even if the nuclear waste water is drunk 2 liters a day, it will not cause damage to health.

  However, according to a report issued by the "Greenpeace" in October last year, the large amount of tritium and carbon-14 contained in the Fukushima nuclear wastewater will greatly increase the radiation dose received by humans, and there is a potential danger of damaging human DNA.

In the words of Sean Bernie, a senior nuclear expert at the organization, harmful elements and other radioactive nuclear waste in wastewater will harm the environment for thousands of years.

  In addition, these radioactive materials can easily enter marine sediments and be absorbed by marine life.

Not only are they potentially toxic to humans, but they can also affect the marine environment in a more permanent and complex way.

  In the face of the Pacific Ocean where countless lives live, Japan's so-called "harmless to humans" rhetoric is extremely thin.

  The living things in the Pacific Ocean are the most abundant in the world's oceans, and the biomass accounts for more than 50% of the world's oceans.

The fauna of the Pacific Ocean is three to four times that of other oceans. There are more than 2,000 species of fish in the islands of Indonesia alone. There are more than 6,000 species of molluscs in the tropical Pacific Ocean, and more than 2,000 species of stony corals.

  Vladimir Rakov, the chief researcher of the Laboratory of the Institute of Pacific Ocean Research of the Far Eastern Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences and a PhD in biology, pointed out that “there is no sufficient basis for all standards. For someone, the so-called concentration is the standard; but For others, it is other indicators. The organisms are not the same. Maybe, it meets human standards, but for octopuses? Obviously not. For example, for whales, a relatively small dose is enough. Let them die. There is no standard for millions of marine life."

  In addition, Rakov said that even if these nuclear wastewater is purified, if it is discharged into the ocean, it may still cause radioactive isotopes to remain in marine organisms, including fish, and then accumulate in the human body.

  The vast ocean can indeed dilute the radiation dose, but there has never been a precedent in human history that releases a considerable amount of various radioactive substances with a long half-life into the global water circulation system.

Many scientists and environmental protection organizations have stated that due to the huge volume of nuclear wastewater and the limited existing technology, it is impossible to fully predict what potential harm the discharged wastewater will cause to the marine environment and human safety.

  "It is true that the Japanese government has repeatedly emphasized that the nuclear waste water discharged into the ocean meets the corresponding standards and has been recognized by the International Atomic Energy Agency. However, Japan and abroad still oppose the discharge of nuclear waste water into the ocean, mainly because of the profound impact of nuclear pollution. And it is unknown." Said Jiang Feng, editor-in-chief of "New Overseas Chinese News," and visiting researcher at the Department of History of Peking University.

  Jiang Feng pointed out that the "Minamata disease incident" that occurred in the 1950s was due to the fact that the Japanese Nitrogen Fertilizer Company began to discharge untreated wastewater into the water in 1925. The ecological environment causes serious pollution.

At first, people thought it was the effect of nitrogen discharged into the ocean, but in the end, it was discovered through investigation and research that the culprit was mercury.

  "Therefore, the Japanese government discharges nuclear waste water that meets the'standard' into the ocean today, but who can guarantee that a similar'Minamata Disease Incident" will not occur in the future? Moreover, the'Minamata Disease Incident' that year was mainly concentrated on In parts of Japan, the nuclear waste water discharged into the ocean will spread to the entire Pacific Ocean, and its impact will be more serious and far-reaching." Jiang Feng said.

  It is extremely irresponsible and extremely short-sighted to transfer the catastrophic results caused by one's own negligence to the ocean.

  In March 2021, on the 10th anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake, Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga visited Fukushima Prefecture.

He said, "The number of storage tanks for nuclear waste water is increasing and the storage space is becoming more and more tense. In this situation, we should not always delay making decisions. We will make decisions responsibly at the right time."

  Is dumping nuclear waste water into the Pacific a responsible decision?

  This decision of the Japanese government has met with widespread opposition in Japan and abroad.

According to polls, about 50% of the people oppose the government's decision.

The National Fisheries Cooperative Federation of Japan clearly opposed the discharge of nuclear waste water into the ocean. The people of Fukushima launched demonstrations and protests in many places, holding up placards such as "The ocean is crying" and "Against the discharge of tritium-containing wastewater into the ocean" to oppose the Japanese government It is hoped that the government will not unilaterally make a decision on the relevant plan.

  South Korea’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Choi Young-sun said at a press conference on April 8, “So far, we have repeatedly emphasized the need for the Japanese government to disclose information, comply with environmental standards acceptable to the international community, and conduct objective and transparent inspections.” Previously, South Korea Ren Junze, chairman of the Central Committee of the Fisheries Cooperative Association, once met with the Japanese Embassy Counselor Nagai Masato, and opposed the idea of ​​discharging nuclear waste water into the sea by the Japanese side.

The Governor of South Korea’s Jeju Province Won Heirong also urged the Japanese government to provide information and initiate consultations.

  On April 12, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Zhao Lijian responded to a reporter’s question on Japan’s proposed decision to discharge nuclear waste water to the sea. He said that China has expressed its serious concerns to Japan through diplomatic channels and demanded that Japan take a responsible attitude and treat it with caution. Disposal of nuclear wastewater from the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant.

  Huo Zhengxin, a professor at the School of International Law of China University of Political Science and Law, said that the international community has so far never discharged nuclear waste water into the ocean.

Huo Zhengxin believes that according to the "United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea", if the Japanese government discharges nuclear waste water into the ocean, it will constitute a typical marine environmental pollution behavior, which not only violates international morality, but also bears corresponding international legal responsibilities.

The convention clearly stipulates that all countries have obligations and responsibilities to protect the marine environment.

Japan is also obliged to protect and preserve the marine environment and take all necessary measures to prevent, reduce and control pollution of the marine environment.

  Regarding such a serious problem, Western countries and their media have fallen silent.

Behaviors that damage the global natural environment and cause far-reaching harm to many living things, including humans, are collectively ignored by Western media that are keen to hype "human rights" and "environmental protection" issues, which is even more ironic.

  Since joining the United Nations in 1956, Japan has always positioned itself as a "responsible power", but now it wants to dump its nuclear waste water into the Pacific, "radiating" to the public welfare and interests of neighboring countries and the international community.

It is extremely irresponsible and extremely short-sighted to transfer the catastrophic results caused by one's own negligence to the ocean.

  The world is cool and hot, and Japan cannot bear the responsibility of discharging nuclear waste water to the Pacific.

(Our reporter Li Yunshu)